Another Review at MyShelf.Com

Publisher: Orion
Release Date: 15 May 2003
ISBN: 075285240X
Format Reviewed: Hardback
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Genre: Historical Romance [1818, London]
Reviewed: 2003
Reviewer: Rachel A Hyde
Reviewer Notes:

Way of the World
By Elizabeth Aston 

     I confess to being a real fan of historical romances, and for ages now I have been hoping that they would come back into fashion again this side of the Atlantic Ocean. One swallow does not make a summer, but maybe I might get my wish if this treat becomes a bestseller. I think that it deserves to. Like Georgette Heyer, it gives this much-maligned genre a good name with meticulous research, an intelligent, insightful heroine and a keen sense of fun. It is ostensibly the sequel to Pride and Prejudice, as the five daughters of Mr. Darcy and his wife Lizzie have been sent from Pemberley in Derbyshire to the fleshpots of London. While their parents are overseas, their cousin and his wife act in loco parentis, but the delights of the Season mean something different to all of them and keeping them out of trouble is going to be a full-time job.

     Sensible Camilla yearns for adventure, and a husband who won't censure her love of books and intelligent activities, but this is a novel that does more than just treat the reader to a round of giddy parties and fan-fluttering misses. It shows how limited the options were for young women whose narrow confines contrasted sharply with the wider sphere of a man's domain. Society looks to be fun on the surface, but it is bound by the rigid rules of propriety which will forgive no lapses on the part of women. This makes it all sound rather gloomy, but it is not a tub-thumping feminist tract; instead, sit back and enjoy a novel that is a more complete experience than the average Regency, replete with lush descriptions and thoughtful insights. I do hope that this will set the stage for more of this sort of thing.

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